Lewis trainer says champion will go right after Tyson early

Friday, May 17, 2002

Mike Tyson may not be the only thug in the ring June 8.

Lennox Lewis' trainer is worried his fighter might go after Tyson with such ferocity that Lewis -- not Tyson -- risks being disqualified for a foul.

"He has that side to him that few people see, a gang type of thinking," Emanuel Steward said Thursday.

Giving some insight into the way Lewis will fight, Steward said his boxer will follow the lead of Buster Douglas and Evander Holyfield -- the two fighters who beat Tyson -- and go right after the former heavyweight champion.

The way to beat Tyson isn't to outbox him, Steward said, but to outpunch him.

"If you fight him back and challenge him, he becomes a confused, scared kid," Steward said. "Lennox believes that in his heart."

If Lewis actually does believe that -- and follows the game plan -- it would be uncharacteristic of a heavyweight champion who has been known more for caution than aggressiveness throughout his career.

Lewis respected the punching ability of Holyfield too much to go after him in their two fights, backed off against Oliver McCall even when his opponent was crying in the ring and spent 12 tedious rounds staying away from David Tua.

"Lennox is not afraid of Mike, which is something Mike Tyson is not used to," Steward said.

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